Fried rice is one of the easiest and quickest, yet satisfying foods in my book. This Asian inspired dish is a keeper at home and I’ve found my self making this all over again in no time, in the last few weeks. One great thing about it is that you can personalize the ingredients as much as you like and it is a good way of using any leftover veggies and cooked rice you may have in your fridge. Although, I must say, I always make mine with freshly cooked rice, just for a matter of preference.
But what makes this fried rice special, apart from the fact that it is homemade, so you know exactly what you are eating (no scary ingredients like MSG or ridiculously high amounts of sodium), it is the Nori seaweed. Nori is the same seaweed that is used to make sushi rolls and I pretty much always have it in my fridge, which have made me discover it and experiment with it in many different ways other than for sushi. I am obsessed with the stuff, since it is a super veggie, with big nutritional value and I love the “fishy” like taste to it. It is a great addition to any Asian inspired dish, to salads or for making low calorie veggie wraps.
I have other recipes using Nori that I would love to share with you in the near future, but for now lets get back to our fried rice.
One ingredient that I find essential in this recipe is the sesame oil. Make sure to use a good quality, unrefined kind and even better if it’s organic. The sesame oil will add that special Asian taste that everybody loves in fried rice.
Also, I am using organic, free range eggs, but if you don’t eat eggs, you can totally skip them.
Last, but not least, for this recipe I’ve had the opportunity to use my own homegrown, super tasty onion greens, and let me tell you, the satisfaction you get from eating something you planted, cared for and “harvested” yourself is unbeatable. Even though this was a small “gardening” project (I also tried growing celery from leftover stalks, but it did not work so well), I am really hoping to have my own veggies garden someday. It has become a dream of mine for so many reasons, but specially because I believe that we should all try to live more natural and sustainable lives, so yes, I am looking forward to that.
I would love to hear your opinions about this subject. Do you have a veggies garden at home? What do you think about the idea of having one? Or if you have any tips on how to start planting, they would be of big help!
Nori Fried Rice (serves 4)
3 cups cooked long grain white rice (I cook mine with a little sesame oil and salt)
2 ½ Tbsp. unrefined sesame oil (I use organic, cold pressed and unrefined), divided
2 eggs (I used organic free range brown eggs), lightly beaten
2 cups white mushrooms, thoroughly chopped
1 celery stalk, thinly sliced
2 small or 1 big carrots, shredded
1 to 2 Tbsp. Tamari soy sauce or to taste
3 green onions (a.k.a. onion greens or scallions), chopped
1 Nori sheet, cut into thin strips
Freshly ground white or black pepper to taste
1. In a wok or a big frying pan, heat ½ Tbsp. of oil on medium high and add the eggs. Scramble the eggs and cook until set, but still soft and moist. Take to a plate and reserve.
2. In the same pan or wok, heat 1 Tbsp. of oil and add the chopped mushrooms. Cook until they become soft and brown.
2. Add the celery and the carrots and cook for about 2 minutes, then add the rice and stir to combine. Add the remaining Tbps. of sesame oil, stir and continue to cook for a couple more minutes until the rice is heated through (specially important if using cold rice).
3. Pour the soy sauce on top of the rice and combine well so that the rice gets colored evenly.
4. Remove the pan from the heat and add the scrambled eggs, a dash of pepper, ¾ of the green onions and ¾ of the Nori strips. Stir gently.
5. Serve in a big serving plate or individual plates or bowls and garnish with the remaining green onions and Nori strips.
a) I like to serve some extra soy sauce in small individual saucer bowls, along with the fried rice, so everyone can add more to taste, if they like.
b) The male hands planting the green onions on the pictures are my husband’s. He was transferring the onion to a bigger pot, since the one we used first was too small (as you can tell), while I was taking the pictures. You know, team work 😉